Editors note: African Voices is a weekly show that highlights Africas most engaging personalities, exploring the lives and passions of people who rarely open themselves up to the camera. Follow the team on Twitter.
London, England (CNN) — As she took to the stage, both judges and spectators alike were unsure what the young Egyptian woman would do. Standing before the mic, dressed head to toe in a soft pink ensemble complete with a matching veil, Mayam Mahmoud was about to perform in front of an audience for the first time. Then, a hard-hitting beat began to blare out of the speakers and the 18-year-old started to rap.
Since her captivating appearance on popular TV talent show Arabs Got Talent last October, the young veiled hip-hop artist has amassed a huge following for challenging how women in Egypt are meant to behave. Her lyrics highlight the importance of girls education and denounce sexual harassment of women on the streets of Egypt.
It was never about going on stage in a scarf, says Mahmoud. It was about going on stage and sharing a message, she adds. Egyptian women undergo harassment and bullying on a daily basis.
Last week Mahmouds inspiring work for womens rights was recognized at the prestigious Index Freedom of Expression awards. The young singer, who won this years Arts category, sat down with CNN before the ceremony to explain how she is tackling Egypts sexual harassment of women head on.
These are matters that are very present in Egypt but no one is talking about them — they are a big problem in Egyptian society, she explains. Its about going out there and explaining your experience and sharing that with others so we know these problems exist and that is the way of changing views.
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Hip-hop as a genre of music is where people have an avenue to express what they feel, the problems they go through … There is less of an emphasis on the performance itself but rather on what is actually being said.
Having grown up in a traditionally conservative, patriarchal society, Mahmouds feminist rhymes resonate with many of her fans who encourage her to continue combating gender discrimination through her music.
She raps in one of songs: Who said that femininity is about dresses? Femininity is about intelligence and intellect.
I defy that
Women in Egypt routinely face instances of sexual harassment — according to a 2008 survey of 1,010 women conducted by the Egyptian Center for Womens rights, 83% of Egyptian women and 98% of foreign women have been sexually harassed.
Mahmoud describes how women can feel self conscious simply for walking to school or work. Shell get looks and it can degenerate into touching. Another thing that commonly happens is that a woman can be walking in the street and she could be followed by a car. It could also degenerate to people hitting her from within the car or getting out of the car while saying all sorts of things to her.
[These incidents] do not encourage her to leave her house anymore. It supports that idea that a woman should stay at home and not go out and Im completely against that. I defy that.
Carnival of Freedom
The rapper, who is also an undergraduate studying politics and social science, also spends much of her time speaking to women who share their stories of daily discrimination with her. With their permission, Mahmoud then incorporates those experiences into her music.
Egyptian women undergo harassment and bullying on a daily basis.
Mayam Mahmoud, hip-hop musician and feminist
There is a lot of recent interest in womens rights in Egypt. People are more responsive at the moment and are becoming more interested in what I have to say. Because of this I set up a Facebook event called Carnival of Freedom and the whole point is to show or post day-to-day activities that are otherwise considered taboo in Egyptian culture.
So for example, [it could be] women playing football or going to a cafe, playing pool or eating in the street. Essentially this is to keep encouraging men and women to be part of this natural need to enjoy ones self and express ones self with freedom.
For the time being, Mahmoud will continue to split her days between university and her passion for rapping. She acknowledges that shes young and is still trying to work out exactly what path to take. But she hopes her raps will continue to inspire others to change the way they think and treat others in Egyptian society.
One of the strongest messages Id like to send is, Freedom is an obligation on others before it becomes my right.
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Irvine, California (CNN) — It wasnt until Yash Gupta broke his glasses in taekwondo practice that he realized just how escort much he relied on them.
His prescription was so high that he had to wait a week to get a new pair.
For Gupta, then a high school freshman, those seven days were a blur. Literally.
I just couldnt see anything, said Gupta, now 17. I couldnt see in the classroom; I would get easily distracted. … Just basic stuff I used to do every day, I couldnt do.
Guptas eyes were also opened to a much larger problem. He saw on the Internet that more than 12 million children worldwide dont have the corrective eyewear they need (PDF).
Its just a total disadvantage for them, because (if) you cant see anything … you definitely cant make the most of the education youre being given, he said. It would be impossible for them to fully achieve their potential.
I had this problem for one week, but these kids have these problems for their whole lives.
So at just 14, Gupta started Sight Learning, an organization that collects used eyeglasses from optometrists and donates them to organizations that can deliver them to children in need.
I had this problem for one week, but these kids have these problems for their whole lives.
CNN Hero Yash Gupta
Since 2011, Gupta has donated 9,500 pairs of glasses, worth nearly $500,000, to young people in Haiti, Honduras, India and Mexico.
For Gupta, who has worn glasses since he was 5 years old, the idea of repurposing old eyewear made sense. Most of his family members wear glasses, and just searching his own home yielded instant results.
I found 10 to 15 pairs just lying around the house in random drawers, Gupta said.
He realized those glasses alone could help 10 or 15 children. So, with help from his father, Gupta set up his organization and approached local optometrists, who agreed to put out drop boxes where patients could donate their used eyeglasses after getting a new pair.
That first interaction was really promising for me, he said. Some of (the optometrists) already had pairs of glasses that they had just accumulated over the years that they didnt know what to do with.
In the past three years, Gupta has gone on numerous trips to India and Mexico, where he not only provides glasses but also assists the doctors and volunteers at eye clinics.
Those who work with him see his age as an asset.
He works hard and has great initiative, but more importantly, he brings such great energy — and that sets the tone for everyone, said Dr. Greg Pearl, president of the California chapter of Volunteer Optometric Services to Humanity.
Gupta says that being in the field is the best part of his work.
That dazed look the first time (children) get glasses, and just seeing that turn into joy and happiness … its just really inspiring, he said.
Gupta knows that the glasses hes providing can make a big impact.
A lot of times, these families are in poverty, he said. With a good education, you know, they can get a good job and get a good career.
Helping others motivates Gupta, whose family immigrated to the United States from India when he was just 1 year old.
We had a really tough time adapting, Gupta recalled. I (am) sympathetic to people who (are) struggling.
Gupta, a senior in high school, helps fund his work by tutoring younger students after school, and he spends about 20 hours a week collecting and shipping the glasses. He plans to continue when he gets to college, and he has his eye on expanding into new territory.
Right now, were partnered with organizations that do international work. But in the future, Id like to bring this service to inner cities in the U.S., he said.
Gupta has gotten a lot of attention for his work, including being honored at a White House event in July. But he says other people his age are also finding ways to give back.
I think theres a misconception with our generation, he said. Many of my friends are doing things to improve their communities.
Kids are passionate and can make a difference. Its just a matter of finding out what you care about and focusing on that.
Want to get involved? Check out the Sight Learning website to see how to help.
(CNN) — Whether its learning how to read and write or setting up your own farm, a Zambian computer tablet — known as the ZEduPad — is trying to open up the countrys information highway.
The brain child of British tech entrepreneur Mark Bennett, the ZEduPad principally teaches users basic numeracy and literacy skills, aimed at primary school children.
It became clear that there was a huge need for this kind of technology, Bennett said, particularly tablet technology, which has come a long way in Africa in recent years.
After arriving in Zambia 30 years ago under the British Aid Program, Bennett worked in the computer department at the countrys national university for over a decade before deciding to go it alone.
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We can really do something very major for the first time, he said. Weve invested about $5 million to date… Its totally all-encompassing and quite prescriptive so we are aiming at being able to get to an untrained teacher in a deep rural area in the African bush.
The ZEduPad is programmed in eight different languages native to Zambia with over 12,000 preloaded classes and lesson plans for untrained teachers in rural areas, according to Bennett.
Approved by the Zambian Ministry of Education, the educational tablet allows children to create a personal profile on its seven-inch screen to keep track of their progress as well as exposing them to e-mail and Wikipedia.
Bennett said the ZEduPad is set up to teach grades one to seven through interactive learning in every subject from math to PE, art and music.
The technology comes at a time when Zambias educational system is undergoing sweeping changes. Since 2001, the government has increased primary school enrollment rates by 90%.
As a result, the World Bank has identified the landlocked southern African nation as having one of the most improved primary school education systems in the developing world.
Bennett added: For years there was a problem with funding, education was not keeping up with population growth. Young people coming out of school and not being well suited or prepared to enter the job market…. Were trying to change that.
The ZEduPad gives children a grasp of vital technology skills in a landlocked country where broadband is scarce and only 18% of the nations 14 million people have access to electricity, according to the World Bank.
In addition to following the national curriculum, the tablet also contains farming and health information designed for adults to help prevent the spread of killer diseases such as tuberculosis and malaria.
Outsourcing to China
The ZEduPad is currently manufactured, assembled and branded in China. The devices are then loaded onto a plane and transported to Zambia, where Bennett and his team install the software onto each tablet.
We sell them to teachers and schools for $200 at the moment. We hope to bring that price down.
Mark Bennett, creator of ZEduPad
It costs roughly $100 to have them made and landed here in this country, Bennett said. We sell them to teachers and schools for $200 at the moment. We hope to bring that price down. One of the other things were trying to do is provide significant tech support.
After teachers purchase the ZEduPad, Bennett said his team of experts go into schools and provide tutorials for staff so that they can maximize the tablets functions while learning how to deliver lessons to pupils.
Bennett said the tablet has, at one time or another, helped employ over 250 staff working in the development and distribution of the software from the companys base in the Zambian capital, Lusaka. He says he has approached the government over hiring assembly workers in Zambia but to no avail.
He said that at a time when few companies are manufacturing technology outside of the Far East, production in China is the cheapest and most cost-effective thing to do.
Looking ahead, Bennett doesnt want to stop at Zambia but hopes to roll the educational tablet out to a raft of other nations on the continent.
He believes that as countries in the developed world continue to transition from desktop computers to smart devices, Africa has a real chance to leapfrog ahead.
I think the next big challenge is going to come from a lot of people who have got very cheap mobile phones. Well gradually see Android smartphones coming out for $70 or so… Huge change is happening at the moment, Bennett said.
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you need heals for them to your snow but anyway I think thatâ€™s enough skin care ramble or next day if you guys have any further questions about products please feel free to leave them down below and I will try to get back EC’s possible I get so many comments it’s really hard for me to keep on top of that are pleased to know that I’ve really really do try to answer as many as possible all the time thanks so much for taking in enough you guys on the scene by Inc he everyone is willing to even make the Queen how are you welcome back to my channel and to my video today I’m going to talk about my top 10 most favorite skin care product and Gino a lot of people you guys come to me seal usage nice kid and you know %um skin is flawless was not release true I do try to find foundation that works on my skin tone and also I’m really dory now as much as I can.
launched their anti-oxidant clarifying cream facial moisturizer this feels a little heavier than the Etta peak repair but still really love it I use it on nights when I just want something low key just a simple maestro comfortable so if you are younger or if you have great skinny don’t need something as treatment based going to be compared in a highly recommend this as well so these are all really affordable yet worthwhile options.
I do love these products just cut they don’t use them every day since I am using have to you through other skin care doesnâ€™t mean now I’m a black these I highly recommend everything that have shown in this video and I know it’s a very basic skincare routine that we went over but sometimes they think is better so make sure that if you wear makeup the most important thing to do is take it of you don’t want clogged pores because that is just asking for acne as far as other acne products go everything is regarding my acne is trumpeter Thomas Roth Eve Had Jumna calling mask very regularly if I ever have a breakout but my current skincare routine already keeps acting at bay and I’ve never really struggled with acne throughout my life never had a really major breakout star scars from acne so unfortunately I can’t really help you guys there but the Dr snow apparently really does help with acne scarring I used it for pigmentation but now than anything the Kielâ€™s it does the same thing for me so I don’t really need to shell out the extra money for the Dr snow BK I just need attack on thehyperpigmentation and not scarring so I’m hoping that will give you abettor idea as to whether.
Games are a great way to be young. Games help us maintain the athlete spirit. Athletes are energetic and they look young than their actual age.
Rest before you are tired
If you can take rest now, then you should not wait for being tired. Relaxed sleep for 8 hours is important. It will increase your performance, you will feel better, and you will look young.
Other than following these tips, you may use anti-aging creams, facials, masks, and massages. They are good to look young. Here is my advice:
Always buy from trusted companies and start using these products when you are 35 years old.
Best of luck!